I have long suffered fighting the “will” of little human beings. Yes suffered. This most literally of course has been of my own making as I have brought those little Human beings into this world. How is it that I could have ever thought that just being a good influence, using good sense, and lots of love would be all that was needed in delivering a good upstanding robot into the world of adulthood ?
Ignorance at its finest is my only answer to that question. Other then the fact that I am not God.
That said can I be frank? Thank you, because it takes an extra amount of effort for me to forge a candy coated black kettle. It just has always has been easier for me to simply call it black , and Today I am frustrated and writing this from the raw.
They say “That parenting is the hardest job in the world and I agree thoroughly, but here is why I believe this is fact.
If you have ever been in a relationship of any kind, had a dog , been a Manager, a Boss, an Employee, or ever have even slightly put up with anything that draws breath, then I am confident that it is no surprise to you that all of the above has its own free”will”.
It is in that “will” that sets the fertile stage for a battle of “wills”.
At this point I have to pause to stop and laugh a moment, because the above said has only insinuated the reasoning behind why parenting is the hardest job in the world. I was merely just painting the foundation.
To explain fully as to what makes parenting the hardest and quite arguably the most impossible job in the world: I will quote from the pages of “Today’s Parental Manual 2017″ entitled your job description as a parent”
“You are hereby expected upon your child’s birth to be fully “RESPONSIBLE” for your child’s “will” choices and behavior ” from the moment they wake up until the moment they sleep and every human activity, interaction, and wrong doing in between. It is also expected on a regular basis that you may be questioned and or interrogated on the behalf of your child’s “will”.
Authorized to conduct these questions and or interrogations are as follows :
The law of the land, anyone whom so chooses, and most commonly yourself.
1. Your child’s will is a direct reflection of your performance
2. Your child’s will indicates the competence you have as a parent
3. Your child’s will is the direct measurement used in determining your value as a human being.
The entire world’s opinion but most commonly your own.
Does this sound fictitious to you ? well of course it is I made it up. However, although the exaggeration seems off the chart it probably doesn’t to most parents. In fact I think today’s parents are feeling this pressure more then ever. In comparison to raising my first batch in the 90’s from today’s parenting it is abundantly clear to me that the bar of good parenting has been raised about a thousand leagues and I have the honor of getting front row seats to all of that pressure.
Forced to be the enemy
In the raising and rearing of other “Wills” I have been relentlessly forced to consider the definitions and meanings of a few coined terms such as “Nature versus Nurture”, “Tough love ” and “Friend or parent”. Although these terms can be quite helpful I still find myself after 6 children feeling quite resentful at having to be the enemy. After all It is excruciating and exhausting work to say the least, and it most certainly doesn’t leave you in the best of moods.
I recall a couple years ago at work I stepped outside for a short break. As I was sitting there taking in the fresh air I noticed my boss had done the same and was in the middle of a personal call on her cell phone. As I tried to pretend I wasn’t hearing everything being said I quickly surmised that she was talking to her teenage daughter. Towards the end of the conversation I Heard her utter the words..” you are going to make me have to be a bitch arnt you? ” Now to the untrained enemy those words can seem quite harsh when spoken to your offspring, yet I was acutely aware of how credible that question/statement really is.
You see, I do not want to fight. I want to laugh, I want to enjoy. I want to live out the picture of two bathed little boys with their feety pajamas on all snuggled up listening intently to their bedtime story. I want to prepare a bowl of fruit for their night time snack and feel the self satisfaction of good parenting skills. I want to settle down at night with the image of those handsome little faces lit up with smiles and nod off to sleep knowing I have the hardest job in the world under wraps.
I do not however want to be pulled into an all out hysterical breakdown war with Korea ( AKA my boys) because bath time is considered a lifetime sentence, a bowl of fruit is not a bowl of ice cream, and bedtime is for sissies.
These are not isolated bad day examples, they are only a few of the endless fights that are sprinkled heavily upon every day of what seems like my entire life.
Most nights I complain to God about this. Here is what it generally sounds like , “God please help ease my guilt, because I feel nothing but dread for tomorrow. I hate having to endure the temper tantrums and arguing just to get through the menial everyday tasks with the boys. I do not want to feel this way Lord, Can you please help me change my attitude ? Can you give me a paradigm shift ? Or better yet can you just make my boys compliant little angels ? (We both laugh at this) because it can seem unfortunate sometimes that the gift of a free “will” includes the barring of anyone else to change it. So I pray that I am being a good influence because we both know that is all I truly have. Next I just ask if He can help me strap on my full armor of emotional warfare for yet another day of being the bouncer director referee .. and forced enemy.”
I do know that these battles shall pass of course, but I also know that the future is bleak. After all I have already raised four children to adulthood and can only surmise from experience that the battles will only “change in nature” and be exchanged with the harder things of life … in which will be fought by a teenager; and it is common knowledge that teenagers are gifted to fight like the Navy Seals of war.
At this point I think I want pause and assure you that I do love my life. My children are my heart. There is much to say about the joy of parenting and I wouldn’t change being their mom for anything in this world. But like any job, even a job you love there are bad days and things you would just rather not ever have to do. I suppose this is a big one for me and find myself weighing the difference of other jobs to the job of parenting . Sometimes I just want to punch out or have the option of blaming my co worker for any mistakes. Theatrically speaking of course.
Yes, I am a tired Mama. I want to sit and write and ponder. I want to have a string long of days without a battle in which I do not have to be responsible for messing up other human beings. I want to bathe in peaceable arguments of the intellectual kind and then gracefully take my leave out of the ring if it gets to uncomfortable.
I know that it is unknowing, but my boys are relying on me to be their enemy. I know that I am really just doing my best at being their guide and protector. However It is truely the part that is a labor of love for me. I just really hate it I don’t want to be the boss. I have never been good in that position.
I suppose I can set my sights to when they turn 18. Maybe I can take my armor off and send in my resignation papers. However I also know this is a pipe dream. It only ushers in an age of worrying from the sidelines. I suppose I am a much nicer enemy then the world will be. I suppose they will end up coming back to ask me how to fight against the enemies of the world like my older ones do now. I pray they do.
For now though I will have to continue daily with the perpetual dares, battles, and pop quizzes they throw that force me to be the enemy.
Maybe I will sit on the couch and let them eat cake and peanut butter cups for breakfast and let them go un-bathed for the entire weekend. Oh wait I did do that last weekend. I think it’s OK to delay a few chosen battles for a moment of rest ? I think for the sake of my own sanity its required from time to time. After all Being a forced enemy doesn’t bring much glory.